Cisco has developed a comprehensive portfolio of wireless networking devices and technologies designed to provide anywhere, anytime connections to information and other resources and to promote teamwork among workers, partners, suppliers, and clients. Cisco's wireless product families include the Small Business, Aironet and Meraki lines of wireless access points, as well as Cisco's Wireless LAN Controller modules and standalone devices. Progent's Cisco-certified wireless consultants can enable organizations of all sizes to utilize Cisco wireless products to accommodate the current model of BYOD networks by converging their wired/wireless environments to benefit from simplified deployment, predictable throughput, single-point control, uniform policy, high availability (HA), and across-the-board security.
Cisco's Converged Security Technology for BYOD and Wired/Wireless Networking
The Cisco Unified Wireless architecture can scale to as many as 18,000 wireless access points with Layer 3 mobility across central or offsite venues like business campuses, university auditoriums, branch offices, and telecommuter homes. Cisco's Wi-Fi access points and controllers are components of Cisco's Unified Wireless Network and are engineered to support the identical level of security, throughput, and manageability for wireless LANs that businesses demand in their wired networks. This technology includes built-in mobile services like Voice over IP, high-definition IP video, and secure guest access. Cisco's Unified Wireless technology enables companies to build Wi-Fi environments that improve the way they do business and improve output through a mobile and connected workforce.
Progent's Cisco-certified network infrastructure consulting services offers online or onsite expertise to help you to design, configure, manage, upgrade, and repair converged wired/wireless networks of any size and for any environment. Also, Progent offers value-priced online and on-premises wireless site surveys to assist your company to design and deploy a Wi-Fi LAN with customized wireless access point clusters optimized for your individual office layout, building structure, and application workloads.
Cisco Small Business, Aironet, Meraki and Catalyst Wireless Access Points
Cisco's Small Business, Aironet, Meraki and Catalyst families of APs enable you to integrate wired/wireless networks to provide the coverage, density, performance, security and manageability required for practically any scenario. These wireless access points range from bare bones, single-band 802.11b/g/n units with data rates of 300 Mb intended for small companies or telecommuters to 802.11ax wireless access points capable of supporting hundreds of wireless clients on each access point and delivering throughput in excess of 5 Gbps. Cisco's latest line of wireless access points can be clustered to deliver the capacity to handle environments crowded with clients and with high usage rates of HD video application software.
Cisco Small Business 100, 300 and 500 Series of Wireless Access Points
Cisco's Small Business Family of wireless access points are Linux-powered units designed as value-priced Wi-Fi solutions for light workloads. Many versions in the Cisco Small Business family of access points work with Cisco's Single Point Setup technology, which makes it possible to set up, control and repair a group of wireless access points from a single AP through a simple web browser interface. All of the models support Power over Ethernet and provide QoS, rogue AP awareness, and bridging for wirelessly connecting to a second network.
The Cisco Small Business WAP121 Wireless-N Access Point is a wall-mountable, single-band 2.4GHz device that can handle 16 active 802.11b/g/n wireless clients, includes a 10/100 Ethernet interface, allows up to 4 AP devices and 40 active clients per cluster, and can handle throughput of up to 300 Mbps. The Cisco WAP131 is a desktop dual-radio 802.11a/b/g/n AP able to support 16 active wireless clients per radio for a total of up to 32 clients, includes a Gigabit Ethernet port, and delivers throughput of up to 300 Mbps for each radio. The WAP131 does not allow AP clustering. The Cisco WAP150 is an entry-level dual-radio AC/n access point that features a one Gbit Power over Ethernet port and can support 16 clients per radio with 867 Mbps performance for 802.11ac devices and 300 Mbps for 802.11n devices. The Cisco WAP1501 allows 4 access points per cluster.
The Cisco Small Business WAP321 AP is a wallmount single-band (either 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz) 802.11a/b/g/n unit with support for 80 active wireless clients sharing an 8-AP cluster. The WAP321 has a 10/100/1000 Ethernet port and can support a sustained data rate of 300 Mbps for the activated radio. Cisco's WAP351 is a dual-radio 802.11n wireless access point that includes a 5-port Gigabit Ethernet interface and can handle 32 active clients per radio for up to 64 clients, and deliver sustained throughput of 300 Mbps for each radio. The WAP351 does not allow clustering. Cisco's Small Business WAP361 is a dual-band 2.4/5 GHz Wireless-AC/N AP that features a 5 x Gb Ethernet switch, can support 32 clients on each radio, and offers 867 Mbps throughput for wireless AC clients and 300 Mbps for 802.11n clients. The Cisco WAP361 supports eight WAP361 access points per cluster. Cisco's wallmount Small Business WAP371 Wireless-AC/N is a dual-radio device that works with 802.11n as well as the new 802.11ac wireless networking specification. The WAP371 includes a Gigabit Ethernet interface, can handle 32 active wireless clients on each radio, and eight access points for each cluster.
The Cisco Small Business WAP561 802.11n Dual Radio AP features a GE interface and two concurrent radios (2.4 and 5.0 GHz) that offer 450 Mbps performance per radio, can handle 64 devices per radio, and allow 16 access points for each cluster. The Cisco WAP551 is similar to the WAP 561 but has a single radio selectable band. Cisco's Small Business WAP571 and WAP571E (the weather-proof outside model) are dual-band 2.4/5 GHz 802.11ac Wave 1 wireless access points that feature 2 x GE LAN interfaces with link aggregation, 3x3 MIMO, and as high as 1.9 Gbps performance with 1300 Mbps over 11ac and 600 Mbps over 11n. Both access points can handle 32 clients per radio and 16 access points per cluster.
The Cisco WAP581 Wireless-AC Dual Radio Wave 2 Wireless Access Point complies with the 802.11ac Wi-Fi 5 specification and offers 4x4 and 3x3 MU-MIMO technology to provide 2.8 Gbps data rates at 5 GHz and 0.6 Gbps on the 2.4-GHz radio for an aggregate max data rate of 2.4 Gbps. The WAP581 includes a fixed 2.5G Ethernet port and a 10/100/1000 Ethernet port with 802.3at Power over Ethernet. Cisco's WAP581 Wave 2 Wi-Fi 5 access point supports as many as 200 connective users, up to 50 active client users for each radio, 16 access points for each cluster, and 960 active client users per cluster.
For details about Progent's support for current and legacy Cisco Small Business series of WiFi access points, see Cisco Small Business WiFi access points planning and support.
Cisco's Aironet Family of Wireless Access Points
The Aironet portfolio of wireless APs has consistently been the market leading access point solution. Aironet access points run the gamut from value-priced entry-level devices to advanced APs. The Aironet series span multiple generations of devices supporting the continually improving Wi-Fi standard. Cisco's latest line of Aironet access points support Cisco's Unified Wireless Network architecture and incorporate 802.11ac support, which offers triple the performance plus greater range and density than the previous generation of APs. The latest dual-band Aironet APs can accommodate 802.11n at 2.4 GHz for client devices that do not have 802.11ac radios.
The oldest Aironet APs are now outdated units that have reached end-of-life status and are no longer fully supported by Cisco. Progent continues to provide technical support for the complete Aironet family of wireless access points and can assist you to maintain your existing Aironet Wi-Fi environment or move cost effectively to the latest Aironet technology. To find out more about Progent's consulting services for current and outdated Aironet access points, see Aironet wireless access points consulting services.
Cisco's Meraki Access Points
Cisco's family of Meraki dual-band 2.4/5 GHz indoor APs range from value-priced models for small businesses to enterprise-class products that offer up to 5.9 Gbit/sec performance. Each Cisco Meraki indoor access point provides high-end capabilities such as plug-and-play installation, advanced protection, Bring-Your-Own-Device support, extensive traffic analysis, automatic over-the-web updates, and consolidated cloud management for multiple sites. Each Cisco Meraki indoor access point also incorporates two high-power client-serving radios with boosted reception plus a dedicated radio that provides (WIDS/WIPS) security for RF analysis and deep packet inspection.
Meraki outdoor access points are IP67 rated, built to operate in rugged outdoor conditions, and tested to withstand dust, vibration and moisture. Cisco's Meraki outdoor access points include a 1 x Gbit Ethernet port and offer advanced features such as cloud management with multi-site visibility and control, 802.1X integration, built-in antivirus scan, single-click secure guest access and isolation firewall, Layer 7 traffic shaping, plus self-configuring mesh with MIMO. For more information about Progent's consulting services for Meraki access points and management, see Meraki access points system design and troubleshooting.
Catalyst 9100 Series 802.11ax APs
Cisco's Catalyst 9100 family of Wi-Fi 6 802.11ax access points are designed for deployments ranging from home offices to crowded arenas. Cisco Catalyst 9100 access points are compliant with the 802.11ax specification, known as Wi-Fi 6, which in turn builds on the previous 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5) standard. As an improvement to 802.11ac, Wi-Fi 6 is designed to use both the 2.4-Ghz and 5-GHz bands. Headline enhancements incorporated in Catalyst 9100 Series access points include MU-MIMO support for uplink traffic, dual NAVs for improved reliability, TWT for conserving power consumption in battery-powered endpoints, adaptive power and sensitivity thresholds for more efficient spectrum use, and dynamic fragmentation for reduced overhead. All Cisco Catalyst 9100 wireless access points can run Cisco's EWC, accommodate up to 200 clients per Wi-Fi radio, and run on Cisco IOS XE Software. To find out more about Progent's consulting services for Catalyst 9100 Family of Wireless APs, see Wireless access points system planning, deployment, and management services.
Cisco 9800 Series Wi-Fi 6 Wireless Controllers
Catalyst 9800 family of Wi-Fi 6-compatible wireless controller appliances allow you to automate and manage advanced wireless environments that support 802.11ax APs. The 802.11ax standard, aka Wi-Fi 6, builds on prior generation 802.11ac (called Wi-Fi 5) devices by providing lower latency and more reliable performance, supporting higher client density, offering enhanced security, saving energy for battery-dependent handheld devices, and offering more flexibility for handling new kinds of Internet-of-Things (IoT) endpoints. Cisco's Catalyst 9800 line wireless controllers include always-on availability with transparent software updates, live fixes, and the ability to connect additional Wi-Fi access points without disruption of service. Enhanced security features include Encrypted Traffic Analytics (ETA), image signing, and Cisco Software-Defined Access (SD-Access). Streaming telemetry allows you to track and analyze network and client health.
All controllers in the Catalyst 9800 line are based on Cisco's IOS XE Software and work with Cisco's DNA Center (DNAC) or with Prime Infrastructure network management tools. Cisco's Catalyst 9800 Series wireless LAN controllers can support Cisco Aironet Wi-Fi 5 Wave 1 and Wave 2 APs concurrently with Catalyst 9100 802.11ax Wi-Fi access points. For more information about Progent's support for Cisco 9800 line of Wi-Fi 6 Wireless Controllers, refer to Cisco Catalyst 9800 family of Wi-Fi 6 wireless controller appliances solution design, deployment, and debugging consulting.
Cisco Wi-Fi 5 802.11ac Wireless Network Controllers
Cisco Wave 2 wireless controllers enable realtime data exchange, provisioning, administration, monitoring and troubleshooting for Cisco Wi-Fi appliances and software services. Cisco has developed both hardware and software-based Wi-Fi controllers for unified administration of wireless networks, but systems with many Wi-Fi APs are better served by physical Wi-Fi controllers. Wave 2 Wi-Fi controller devices from Cisco deliver major advantages over Wave 1 and older models including greater throughput, simultaneous support for both 1G and 10G Ethernet, improved application visibility and control, and advanced, built-in security.
Cisco's 3504 Wireless Controller is an entry-level appliance with a desktop form factor and designed for small and medium-sized organizations. You can use the 3504 model in a centralized WLAN environment such as in small branch and home-based offices administered across the wide-area network with FlexConnect, or in bridge deployments where Ethernet cabling is sparse. The 3504 Wi-Fi controller can handle as many as 150 WiFi access points and 3,000 users, offers 4 Gbps performance, and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. Cisco's 3504 controller includes a Cisco Multigigabit interface and four 1-Gigabit Ethernet connections. Access points can be connected to the controller via two Power over Ethernet (PoE) ports. The 3504 wireless controller features fast failover for access points and users, which allows uninterrupted availability for apps. Like other Wave 2 wireless controllers available from Cisco, the 3504 model has the built-in ability to work with Cisco Prime Infrastructure, Cisco Mobility Services, and Cisco 5520 and 8540 WiFi controllers.
The Cisco 5520 Wireless Controller, available in a 1RU enclosure, is intended for midsize to large organizations and campus networks and can be used in centralized, distributed, and mesh deployments. The 5520 wireless controller supports up to 1,500 wireless APs and 20,000 client users, delivers 20 Gbps throughput, and supports 4,096 VLANs. The 5520 wireless controller features two 10 GE interfaces and features solid-state storage, backup fans, optional dual power supplies, and subsecond failover for uninterrupted availability.
Cisco's 8540 Wireless Controller, available in a 2RU enclosure, is a top-of-the-line WiFi controller designed to support large enterprises, service providers, and large campuses. The 8540 WiFi controller can be used in centralized, distributed, and mesh architectures and can handle up to 6,000 Wi-Fi access points and 64,000 users. The 8540 WiFi controller can deliver data rates up to 40 Gbps and supports up to 4,096 VLANs. The 8540 controller includes four 1-GB or 10GE interfaces and features SSD storage, dual power supplies, backup fans, and rapid failover.
Wave 1 Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco wireless controllers reduce the effort and cost needed to configure, manage, and troubleshoot wireless networks by centralizing control of tasks such as setting up APs, enforcing single-point policies across converged wired/wireless LANs, supporting enterprise-wide Quality of Service (QoS) for IP voice and video, monitoring and troubleshooting system health, implementing security tools to guard against unauthorized access and DDoS attacks, and handling IPv6 clients. Cisco has developed wireless network controllers for businesses of all sizes and offers desktop or rackmount controllers, modular add-on controllers for Cisco ISR routers and switches, and Catalyst switches with built-in wireless LAN controllers.
Cisco's Wave 1 wireless LAN controllers include Cisco CleanAir tools to avoid RF interference and create self-optimizing wireless LANs for maximum 802.11n and 802.11ac performance and security. Integrated Bonjour Gateways enable discovery and policy across the enterprise for Apple applications. For fault tolerance, Cisco wireless controllers allow AP and client stateful switchover by permitting a backup high-availability wireless controller to synchronize with a main controller for access point license count, CAPWAP keys, and access point CAPWAP state. If the main wireless controller fails, thousands of access points and wireless clients can failover at subsecond speeds to the backup wireless network controller.
Cisco's Wireless Module for ISR Routers with UCS-E provides basic 802.11n and 802.11ac capability for Cisco 2900 and 3900 routers used by small to medium-sized businesses and branch offices. This affordable and scalable module can support up to 200 access points and up to 6000 wireless clients. (To learn about Progent's remote and on-premises consulting services for Cisco routers, see Cisco router deployment and troubleshooting services.)
Catalyst 3650 Series are 1RU form-factor switches designed for small to mid-size businesses and satellite offices and come with an integrated wireless network controller with the ability to support up to 40 Gb of wireless throughput for each switch and up to 25 access points and 1000 clients on each switch. Cisco Catalyst 3850 Series are 1RU switches intended for mid-size and large organizations and include a built-in wireless controller supporting up to 40 Gb of wireless capacity on each switch and support for up to 50 wireless access points and up to 2000 wireless clients. The WiSM2 is an add-in blade for Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series switches with a built-in wireless network controller intended for mid-to-large size enterprises and capable of 20 Gbps throughput and able to handle up to 1000 APs and up to 15,000 wireless clients. (To learn about Progent's support for Catalyst switches, refer to Cisco switches deployment and management consulting.)
Cisco 2500 Series Wireless Controllers are entry-level desktop devices that simplify the deployment and operation of Wi-Fi networks for SMBs and branches. The 2500 Series wireless LAN controller can handle 5 to 75 wireless access points and up to 1000 clients and can deliver throughput of up to 1 Gbps.
Cisco's 5500 Series Wireless Controller is an expandable 1RU appliance intended for mid-to-large sized organizations and campuses and can manage 500 APs and 7,000 wireless clients while delivering 8 Gbps performance. Cisco's 5760 Series Wireless Controller is a 1RU appliance intended for mid-to-large campuses with the ability to manage 1000 access points and 12,000 wireless clients and providing performance of 60 Gbps to accommodate high wireless client densities and high usage of video-intensive mobile applications.
The Cisco Flex 7500 Series Wireless Controller is designed to enable centralized management of thousands of wireless branches from a single datacenter, eliminating the requirement for a Wi-Fi controller at each remote site. The 1RU rackmount Flex 7500 lets you build a private cloud to deploy, monitor, maintain, and repair up to 6000 APs and 64,000 clients while supporting 1 Gbps performance. Cisco's 8500 Wireless Controller is a 1RU rackmount device engineered to manage wireless environments for large campuses or for service providers and can scale to handle up to 6000 wireless points and 64,000 wireless clients while delivering 10 Gbps throughput.
To learn more about Cisco WiFi controllers, see Cisco Wi-Fi controllers consulting services.
Legacy Cisco Access Points, LAN Bridges and Wi-Fi Controllers Supported by Progent
The 802.11ac standard for Wi-Fi effectively made obsolete the previous releases of Wi-Fi products for many venues that have high numbers of clients and high usage of HD video applications. Even for businesses who do not need the performance of 802.11ac, a large number of Cisco wireless devices have arrived at end-of-life status, which can pose serious service and regulatory compliance problems. Progent's Cisco-certified consulting experts offer remote and on-premises support for a broad range of earlier-generation wireless products from Cisco. Progent can in addition help companies to evaluate the financial justification for updating legacy wireless technology and can assist in planning and executing affordable, seamless upgrades. The following are a few of Cisco older-generation wireless products that Progent's consulting experts still support.
Legacy Cisco Aironet APs
Cisco Aironet 1000/1130AG Series wireless access points are designed for conventional workplaces and other locations which have little environmental instability. These access points include integrated antennas that provide predictable radio range profiles. The 1130G Series WAP is designed for restricted domains that do not allow 802.11a/5GHz operation.
Cisco Aironet 1230AG or 1240AG Series wireless access points are designed for more challenging radio frequency situations such as factories or above ceiling structures which often call for flexible external antennas and rugged metal cases. The Cisco Aironet 1240G Series product is designed for restricted domains that do not allow 5GHz transmission.
Cisco Aironet 1500 lightweight outside mesh APs provide an economical, scalable, protected outdoor wireless network mechanism for enterprise campuses and for public sites that need access for mobile devices.
Legacy Cisco Aironet Wireless LAN Bridges
Cisco wireless LAN bridges provide a high-throughput and feature-rich solution for integrating numerous local area networks in a metro area or public access environment. Cisco wireless bridges provide a flexible, manageable solution that meets the security demands of wide-area networking specialists. These bridges manage both point-to-point and PTMP implementations with good coverage and the ability to handle traffic rates up to 54 Mbps.
Cisco wireless bridges deliver throughput dramatically faster than E1/T1 connections for a fraction of the expense, erasing the necessity of expensive leased lines when linking separate buildings. Because bridges carry no ongoing costs, savings on leased-line bills rapidly cover the startup hardware costs. Self-installed private lines and even leased lines utilizing copper or optical cable often require considerable startup costs in cases where they are separated by obstacles such as highways, railroads, or bodies of water. Cisco wireless LAN bridges can be installed rapidly with a fast ROI.
Cisco Aironet 1300 outside access points/bridges can be implemented as stand-alone access points, bridges, or wireless group bridges. These products have a tough cover and provide fast, cost-effective wireless interfaces between multiple fixed or mobile environments and clients.
Aironet 1400 bridges provide high-performance, dependable outdoor wireless bridging for line-of-sight (LOS) environments. They include an all-weather enclosure that can withstand severe outdoor conditions and can operate in wide temperature ranges.
Legacy Cisco WLAN Controllers
Cisco WLAN Controllers centralize the management of wireless LANs by simplifying the control of key technologies including intrusion prevention, fast RF control, zero touch configuration, and full N+1 redundancy. WLAN controllers operate with lightweight wireless access points to offer superior performance and advanced administration capabilities.
Wireless LAN Controllers provide the control, scalability, protection, and fault tolerance that IT managers need to create secure, large-scale wireless environments, from branch locations to small companies to main campuses. Cisco's legacy WLCs can be clustered to provide support for as many as 2400 WAPs per roaming domain.
The Cisco WLCM or WLCM-E Wireless LAN Controller Module for IS Routers provides small-to medium businesses (SMBs) and enterprises an affordable way to implement and manage secure WLANs at satellite locations. These devices manage as many as 12 Aironet access points and are installable in 2800/3800 Integrated Services Routers and Cisco 3700 Series Routers. (For information concerning Progent's online and on-premises support for Cisco routers, refer to Cisco router configuration and management services.)
How Progent's Engineers Can Help Your Business with Cisco Wireless Devices
Progent can provide a Cisco-certified consulting professional to help you to plan, install, manage and troubleshoot a converged wired/wireless infrastructure integrating a broad array of wireless products that offer the identical protection, extensibility, and ease of management you demand from your wired network. Progent can help you to maintain legacy Wi-Fi solutions from Cisco or migrate seamlessly to current 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 technology. Progent's CISA and ISSAP security specialists can advise you about how to design protection into your WLAN and your company's processes. Progent's disaster recovery planning consultants and business continuity consultants can help you to deploy the high availability features incorporated into Cisco's wired/wireless technologies so your converged network provides continuing business value.
Progent’s Wi-Fi Site Survey assists you to plan and deploy a robust wireless network customized for your facilities, offering a Wi-Fi ecosystem that delivers seamless coverage, high performance and capacity, Quality of Service features to accommodate IP voice and video, advanced security, and simplified management. Progent's Wireless Site Survey can be delivered remotely to reduce time and expense, or onsite to deal with more complex facilities.
For a further look at Progent's wireless consulting capabilities, see Progent's Wireless Expertise.
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